Cape Breton woman in her 70s is Nova Scotia’s first death related to COVID-19

A woman in her 70s from Cape Breton has died from complications related to COVID-19, according to health officials, marking what they say is Nova Scotia’s first death connected to the virus.

The Department of Health said Tuesday in a news release the woman had underlying health conditions. She died Monday in a hospital in the eastern zone, an area that includes Antigonish and Guysborough counties and Cape Breton.

“I had hoped this day would never come and I’m deeply saddened that a Nova Scotia family is going through this,” Premier Stephen McNeil said in the release. “My deepest condolences go to the family and friends who are grieving today.

“This virus is dangerous. We have to work to slow it down to protect ourselves, those we love and everyone in our communities so that no other family has to suffer a loss like this.”

The province also announced Tuesday it had identified 17 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the provincial total to 310. The cases ranged in age from under 10 to older than 90.

This map shows the breakdown of known COVID-19 cases in Nova Scotia by health zone, as of Tuesday, April 7, 2020. (Province of Nova Scotia)

Eleven people were in hospital and 66 were listed as recovered. There had been 10,621 negative COVID-19 test results in the province. 

On Monday, the province announced it was expanding the testing criteria to anyone showing the symptoms of COVID-19: a fever or a new or worsening cough.

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